DaDa (DaDa, 1983)
(Dada, Dada, Dada)
(Dada, Dada, Dada)
(Dada, Dada, Dada)
[Alice] I don’t know what you mean about nasty feelings, it’s…
[Doctor] Let me help you out of this, you were starting to feel a certain way, violence, resentful.
[Alice] How do you know that? I told you? I told you that?
[Doctor] That’s right, remember yesterday?
[Alice] I don’t want to talk about that, I don’t want to talk about it. Let’s talk about, uh, talk about something else. Ok?
[Doctor] What would you like to talk about?
[Doctor] Tell me about your son.
[Alice] My son, yeah well, he took care of me. He’s took care of me for a long, he still takes care of me. She takes good, and she takes care of me. She
takes, she takes good care of me. He takes care of me, Do you believe it.
I have a daughter too.
[Doctor] You don’t have a daughter.
[Alice] Yeah, I have a daugher, yeah.
[Doctor] A son – you have a son, a son.
[Alice] No I, no I, all I have, I have
I have a son, I have a son and a daughter, and a daughter. No, I have a son, daughter, daughter too, and a boy, and a boy
[Alice] I’m a little tired now
[Doctor] Well that’s alright, I think that’s enough for today.
[Alice] I’m feeling rough and kinda hungry too.
[Alice] Who’s my boy?
This week, we look at Coop’s 8th solo album, DaDa. The LP was released in 1983 and wound up being his last record with the Warner Bros. label.
DaDa stands apart from other Alice Cooper albums. It embraces many things we’ve come to expect from Alice – absurdity, artistic liberation, dark humor, and so on. However, DaDa displays an extra element of surrealism – a form of expression free from the conscious mind or rational control.
That extra dose of surrealism can be felt throughout the entire LP experience, conceptually through the visual artwork and audibly through the music.
DaDa features Bob Ezrin as producer and co-writer on several songs. It also marked the first time Alice and Ezrin had worked together since the 1977 LP – Lace and Whiskey).
BRIEF SIDE NOTE: Throughout this journey, it’s been mind-blowing to discover Bob Ezrin’s impact on the music industry. As music fans, we often pay the most attention to the performance artists’ while overlooking the process and production it takes to create an LP.
A good portion of the initial concept for Alice Cooper progressed through the artistic guidance of Mr. Ezrin. It should also be stated that his work with other bands and records is equally impressive.
For instance, other albums, including Pink Floyd’s “The Wall” and Kiss’s “Destroyer,” would have sounded entirely different or never been recorded without his ear and musical talent.
This post (along with so many others in this blog) is a salute to Bob Ezrin and the gifts he’s given to the world of art, music, and entertainment. We shudder to think what the world of music would look like without him.
There is little known about this period. At least three of the albums recorded in the early 80s – Special Forces (1981), Zipper Catches Skin (1982), and DaDa (1983) – are considered The Blackout Albums (some fans and critics include Flush The Fashion (1980) as well).
“To be honest with you, I don’t remember writing them; I don’t remember recording them, I don’t remember touring with them. If there was a time in my life that was on automatic pilot, that was it.” – Alice Cooper
“DaDa” is the first song heard on the LP and dramatically opens the album for the listener. Solely written by Ezrin, the track is theatrically landscaped by a score of synthesized tones and loops accompanied by an infant or child-like echo uttering the word – “DaDa.”
Anyone that had first believed this album was merely a nod to Dadaism (an early 20th-century avant-garde art movement) quickly notices that there is a dual-play on the word “DaDa.”
[Alice] I don’t know what you mean about nasty feelings; it’s…
[Doctor] Let me help you out of this; you were starting to feel a certain way, violent, resentful.
[Alice] How do you know that? I told you? I told you that?
[Doctor] That’s right, remember yesterday?
[Alice] I don’t want to talk about that; I don’t want to talk about it. Let’s talk about, uh, talk about something else. Ok?
After more than two minutes of music, a dream-like state is set for the rest of the track. Then the mood turns darker, and Alice’s voice can be heard conversing with another person (someone that appears to be a doctor or a psychiatrist).
The discussion is a back-and-forth exchange between the two, focusing on Alice’s temperament and his family.
Again, not much is known about this period, but it would seem Alice was standing at a crossroads. During the discussion, Alice is asked about his change in feelings – including violent, resentful emotions.
Maybe so many years of playing the villain had finally caught up to him?
Perhaps he noticed that so many other musicians (Hendrix, Morrison, Joplin, Moon, etc.) had been down the same road he was on and died as a result.
That part of the discussion is quickly shut down as Alice mutters, “I don’t want to talk about it. Let’s talk about, uh, talk about something else. Ok?”
The dialogue then refers to “his son.” At the time, Alice only had one child, his daughter, Calico.
Was this song meant to be taken literally or figuratively?
Is this a discussion about his “son,” Alice, the character who takes care of him?
Was it about Warner Bros. Records and the discontentment surrounding his relationship with them?
Was it an externalization of the conflicts faced between being a Rockstar, a Husband, and a Father (all while living under the microscope of the “public eye”)?
As a listener, it’s fascinating to try piecing together what might have been happening inside the minds of both parties during the discussion.
Have any of us ever been there, confused by our circumstances? Wondering how we got where we currently are? Trying to identify who we are or what we’ve become? What went wrong? Maybe all of the above?
It seems as if we reach various crossroads throughout our lives – what career choice/change should we make, who should we marry, when should we have kids, etc., but isn’t the most crucial crossroad a spiritual one?
Each intersection, crisis, or struggle can be seen individually (as a hurdle or stepping stone to the next), or they can be seen as something much more profound – a spiritual journey that carries us closer to realizing who God is and our purpose for being here.
Alice’s journey has inspired many people across the globe as they witness a man transformed by the Mercy, Grace, and Love of our Heavenly Father.
Through his transformation, we see Alice and Sheryl Cooper together, giving back to their community as partners in The Rock Teen Centers. We see them as crucified with Christ, yet ALIVE through Him in Spirit (Galatians 2:20).
So, the real personal question is, where are we? Are we currently at an intersection in life?
Have we come to that spiritual crossroad that asks, “where do we stand,” “who do we follow,” and “where are we headed?”
Transformation is supernatural and doesn’t typically happen overnight. It’s a journey and a process.
The key things to remember, not only after we’ve decided to take the plunge and walk with Christ but also as we continue to grow and learn (replacing your old nature with His nature), are as follows:
- Learn to move past our past – Many essential verses apply here, but these three, in particular, define how we should view our history while we rejoice in our present (knowing He holds the plans for our future).
“18 Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. 19 See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it/ I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” – Isaiah 43:18-19
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!” – 2 Corinthians 5:17
”13 Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” – Philippians 3:13-14
- Learn to face fear by standing on His Word – The saying “Fear Not” is found more than 100 times throughout scripture. We see these words mentioned in songs and prayers as encouragement for one another.They were also often used by Christ to calm the hearts of the faithful. Learning to replace Fear with Faith is essential. Here are some verses to guide our steps.
“3 When I am afraid, I put my trust in you. 4 In God, whose word I praise – in God I trust and am not afraid. What can mere mortals do to me? 5 All day long they twist my words; all their schemes are for my ruin.” – Psalm 56:3-5
“22 Do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. 23 Life is more than food, and the body more than clothes. 24 Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds! 25 Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?”- Luke 12:22-25
“There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.” – 1 John 4:18
- Learn to find joy as you endure life’s trials – Ever heard the saying, “when life gives you lemons, make lemonade?” There’s a respectable amount of truth to that. The truth is that a decent amount of strife precedes some of our most significant victories in life.We are “put through the fire,” so to speak, and come out galvanized by the experience. Strategic verses for this thought process include the following:
“Those who sow with tears will reap with songs of joy.”- Psalm 126:5
“I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.” – Romans 8:18
“2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.” – James 1:2-3
Wrapping up this week’s post, we often find a great deal of transformation when life seems hopeless and lost.
It may not be fully recognized at that moment, but we are being strengthened as we suffer. Ultimately, we can choose to springboard out of the darkness or plummet further into despair.
As discussed above, we must learn to let go of the things that haunt our past. It is vitally important for us to know and believe that once we’ve accepted Christ as our Lord and Savior, His Spirit – the Holy Spirit – from that moment forward dwells within us.
We become new creations, shedding the skin of our former selves, and now walk, forever, as righteous through the blood of Christ. We are no longer slaves of this world; we are free from those chains – loosened by the Love of our Lord (Romans 6:6).
We must learn to face fear head-on, knowing that our Heavenly Father has a plan, and that fear draws to us what we fear most, while faith draws us closer to the One that is faithful. Therefore, we must ask ourselves, do we fear what tomorrow holds, or are we faithful that He will supply our every need?
Finally, we must learn to find joy even in the tougher moments in life. Storms come and go throughout our time here on earth. How we view and approach those tougher moments will help us navigate further upstream.
The truth is this, we find real joy and meaning as we persevere and allow Him to lift us out of the muck and mire onto the solid ground of His Word. It is there that we learn and see the amazing things He has done and is doing (Psalm 40).
In conclusion, the darkest path of Alice’s journey directed him toward the Light. Coop admits he was healed and stripped of his addiction – his need for alcohol was taken away from him. No withdrawals. Nothing. It was gone.
Miracles do happen, and living proof does exist. If you don’t know much about this time period in Coop’s life and career, just a little bit of reading and Google research exposes a frail, sick-looking Alice.
However, approximately six months or more after he was hospitalized (for dangerously low potassium levels and cirrhosis of the liver), he was reunited with his wife, Sheryl, and daughter, Calico. The makings of what the world would have considered the end became a new beginning.
After a few years apart from the music industry, the “new Alice” would appear sober, more sinister, and full of ego – the villain was back and more durable than ever.
Alice, the character, was recreated, but Alice, the man, was a new creation. A living embodiment of the Mercy, Grace, and Love of his Creator – the Creator and Designer of us all. Amen.
That’s it for this week. Be well and catch you next Friday.
In the meantime, Keep walkin’ in Faith and rockin’ with Alice!
Have you accepted Christ as your Savior?
If you would like to accept Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior, please pray the following prayer:
"God, I believe in you and your son Jesus Christ. I believe that Jesus died on the cross and rose from the grave to save me. Today, I invite Jesus into my heart to stay. I make you Lord over my life. Make me new. Wash me, Lord, and cleanse me. In Jesus Name, Amen"
If you have just prayed that prayer, we want to celebrate your new victory with you. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org so we can welcome you into the kingdom. We don't want you to have to walk alone and we have some resources we would like the opportunity to share with you.
NOTE: We’d also like to share the following resources used by “Fridays With Alice.” Without these books and sites, this would be a much more complicated endeavor. So be sure to check them out if interested.
Click the images to learn more about these resources: